Nothing worse than office peppiness

Chicago Tribune:

Every office has a person who has taken a few too many drags on the pep pipe. A manager or co-worker whose sunny disposition can cloud an otherwise delightfully pessimistic day.

I’m talking about the patrons of positivity, the bright-siders, the people who see every glass as half full and every mistake as an “error-portunity.”

You don’t have to be like me — a lifelong subscriber to American Cynics Illustrated — to find these folks grating or even to ask whether they are detrimental to the workplace.

A recent note from a reader makes a good argument that they are. It described a boss who is an aphorism-spouting optimism addict. His insistence on putting a positive spin on everything has workers afraid to express their concerns or frustrations, unclear on where they stand with the boss and distrustful of each other.

“I’m baffled and annoyed by his rosiness,” the reader wrote.

Barbara Ehrenreich understands this. She wrote a book called “Bright-sided: How the Relentless Promotion of Positive Thinking Has Undermined America,” a searing takedown of the “think positive”-ization of America. She writes that most Americans were introduced to the concept of achievement-through-optimism by Norman Vincent Peale’s 1952 book “The Power of Positive Thinking.”

Read the whole story: Chicago Tribune

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